Saturday, March 12, 2016

Trial by Guilt

Its been long over. I vanquished the Great Lord of the Dark. I personally slew him with the Holy Sword of the Gods of the Light. I ran him through and watched the blood gush and splatter onto the floor in all its black slickness most foul. I made sure to stare into his evil eyes as his life left them. I watched his body crumple and fall lifeless to the ground.

Evil was destroyed. At least for within our life times and humanity was saved. There were a few monstrous survivors, but many would hunt them down without me. Or mine.

I returned home to a hero's triumph. Me and my few band of brothers and sisters. the survivors of our great quest and war. The survivors of the decisions I made. They had supported each one and paid the price of my mistakes, of my decisions, of my brilliance and stupidity. So many died that trusted me. So many.

The fetes, the triumphs, the parades through all the lands. They were a temporary balm to what I knew, what I experienced, what I went through. My guilt was tremendous, but kept at bay by the adulation. By the constant attention.

That is long gone now.

By the time the triumphs and parties were completed, the stragglers of the Dark One were long since wiped out. There were no pretenders to the Dark Throne either. Nor were there any other evil aspirants. With Evil vanquished, the world has little need for a hero.

Little need for me.

Or my friends.

I was offered the world. I asked for a farm. A small and isolated farm where I could be alone and till the soil. Plant and sow crops. Live simply and survive. To hopefully survive my newest and greatest trial: my trial by guilt.

I think of all those I lost. The great city of Jordanos I promised I would return to with an army to relieve it...only to arrive too late. I think of the Woods of the Elves burnt to the ground. I consider the doom of the great kingdom under the ground. I think of the burning and pillaging and death, oh the death. The death of my friends. The deaths of the innocents. The deaths of those who believed in me.

I sit here now, in my small farm house, off in the woods. I sit here on these cold winter nights with nothing to do, no great labors to achieve, nothing for me but to sit and consider whether I will survive my trial by guilt.

I sit and contemplate with the fire flickering in the background.

I sit and contemplate the dagger sitting on the table before me.

The fire's light flickers dance and reflect off it.

I stare right at the blade, struggling with my trial by guilt.

I sit and contemplate.

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